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SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: SIGIA-L: Limiting links on a page in

RE: SIGIA-L: Limiting links on a page in order to reduce information overload

From: Truong, Kristen (ktruong_at_covisint.com)
Date: Fri Jan 11 2002 - 09:36:39 EST


Rashmi Sinha said,
"Miller's law probably still applies to some degree even though all the
items are on the web page in front of the user.
<snip>
However, there are other ifs and buts to Miller's law that as applied to
Web Design. Miller's law is about "unrelated" items. If an information
architect is doing their job right and taking advantage of "semantic
relationships" between items then memory capacity is larger."

I agree with Rashmi. In fact, Miller's law is about "chunks" of
information. An example often used is, 7 unrelated numbers are about
all most people can remember, but a phone number is not 7 unrelated
numbers, it's one chunk of information. People can remember more
information in their short term memory if that information is chunked
into semantic groups. Therefore, if you can semantically or visually
"chunk" information, you do not have to limit everything literally to
7+/- 2. However, the law is still incredibly helpful as a guideline for
creating "digestible" interfaces.

Kristen Truong
Information Architect
Construct Team | Covisint
ktruong_at_covisint.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Rashmi Sinha [mailto:sinha_at_sims.berkeley.edu]
Sent: Thursday, January 10, 2002 11:59 PM
To: sigia-l_at_asis.org
Subject: Re: SIGIA-L: Limiting links on a page in order to reduce
information overload

Brad,

If an information
architect is doing their job right and taking advantage of "semantic
relationships" between items then memory capacity is larger.

-rashmi sinha
SIMS, UC Berkeley



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